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Thousands Of Volunteers, National Guard Troops Keep New Jersey's COVID Vaccination Centers Running

EDISON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- Vaccination sites across New Jersey would be unable to function without thousands of volunteers and National Guard troops.

CBS2's Meg Baker spoke with some the people who are selflessly helping fight the pandemic.

"My husband got his first shot... I am really thankful for all the volunteers," said Sock Wang from Summit, New Jersey. "I wanted to do the same for others."

Wang works the registration desk, checking people in for appointments and cheering them on through the vaccination process

"I felt like I was giving back to the community, helping the process. Also wanted to experience it firsthand," said Stephen Wright from South Orange, New Jersey.

COVID VACCINE

Emily Reynolds from Montclair, New Jersey is a mom with kids learning virtually. But she takes the time away from home to serve others.

"We get lots of questions. People are excited or nervous... It's a fun, rewarding way to volunteer," said Reynolds.

Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo says the county would not be able to run their five sites without more than 200 volunteers a day.

"You can't pay for what they are doing... This is coming from their heart and I really appreciate it," DiVincenzo said.

National Guard troops help make the process seamless at mega vaccination sites.

"These orders came up and I hopped on," said Sgt. Melissa Hoffman, who has previously been stationed in Dubai.

CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

"I joined in 2015 and I did not think I was going to be doing anything like this, but I was always ready to do so," said Specialist Roberto Umana.

Other soldiers left their families behind in other states to fulfill their duty to protect New Jersey from the coronavirus.

Thousands of volunteers are needed across the state. If you're interested in volunteering, officials say you should contact your county office to find out how.

CBS2's Meg Baker contributed to this report.

EMERGENCY COMPONENT - LOCAL

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